Friday, October 21, 2016

What is the Aim of our Writing?

I recently read Scribbling in the Sand by Michael Card. The book offers a reflection on creativity in terms of faith

Card begins with the Gospel story of Jesus scribbling in the sand. A woman had been accused of adultery. The Pharisees had brought her to Jesus as part of a trick to find out what he would do. Instead of saying anything, Jesus bent down and wrote in the sand. Once he finished writing, he stood up and stated "Whoever is without sin, let him cast the first stone."

We have no idea what Jesus wrote and it really doesn't matter.

What Jesus did that morning created a space in tome that allowed the angry mob first to cool down, then to hear his word, and finally to think about it . . . It made time stand still. . . .Jesus' action created a frame around the silence - the kind of silence in which God speaks to the heart. In short, it was a supreme act of creativity. It was art. . . .

All the art ever done in his name since that day cannot hope to be more, and should not be allowed to be less, than Jesus' scribbling that morning in the sand. If what we create, write, dance, or sing can open up such a space in time through which God may speak, imagine the possibilities! . . . From the flat, gray point of view of the fallen world they are only scratches and scribbles in the sand, but in the light of eternity they become the occasion for divine revelation. What more could we ever hope for, and once we've seen this new possibility, how could we ever settle for less?

The book is excellent and offers much food for thought. While it is geared most to musicians, most of it applies to anyone who is Christian and involved in creativity in any way.

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